I’ve never been one to shy away from new adventures.
Move to a new city — where you don’t know a soul — for a new dream job? Yes!
Launch a new startup when you just started a startup? Yes!
Rescue two stray kittens when you hardly have enough time to brush your own hair, let alone feed milk to baby cats? Yes!
Go on a date with a billionaire? Yes!
I’ve done all of this. And, there actually isn’t much I’ve wanted to do that I haven’t done. I’m one of those people that sees something, wants it and goes after it. If something sounds fun, I’m there. If a challenge presents itself, I’m on it.
Do some people think I am kind of strange? Yes!
My grandmother always said I wasn’t afraid of anything; always up for the next journey. But, what she didn’t know is that I do get afraid. Afraid I won’t be able to give 150%. Afraid I’ll make a bad decision. Afraid I will sneeze while on stage. Afraid that I will really suck at something. But, fear does not own me, and that’s why people thing I never get afraid. I get scared, but this thing called fear will never dictate my life.
Note fear, then tell it to go.
Fear is just a feeling that we have — ingrained in us as a survival mechanism. Back when we were cavemen and cavewomen, I supposed being afraid of what was on the other side of that big mountain was probably a good thing with all of those bears and snakes and other things that might kill cave-dwelling folk.
But, today, those ancient threats are a thing of the past, so if we let fear control us, then we lose. And, I’m not about to lose. Especially when something sounds like fun. Are you?
My motto? Do one thing each day that scares you.
So, every day I send that email to that eccentric business person with my zany, yet brilliant idea, or I climb a tree to save a bird. (Yes, a bird with a broken wing.) Why? Because I truly believe that by facing our fears we grow. Every little step forward we take — whether it’s down the airport runway because we are afraid to fly; into the high school cafeteria for all to see when we have a zit; or down the kitten food aisle at Petco without a clue about cats — moves us ahead in life. It makes us feel good. Happy, in fact.
Did you do something that scared you today? If you haven’t, you should. Because, like I said, fear is just an emotional response to something that our brains perceive as dangerous. And our brains are still wired like those of cavemen, unfortunately.
So the next time an opportunity presents itself and you want to do it, but you are hesitating, do what I do and ask yourself questions like this:
“Will this kill or harm me?” “Will this person actually murder me if I send this email asking about a business partnership?” “If I go to this party and do something stupid, will the world end?”
Oh, so doing that “scary” thing won’t harm anyone? Then go for it.
Now, I’m not telling you to do something crazy, like jump off a building with no parachute, but I am saying life is short — and now is the time to face all fears and welcome new adventures, collaborations and people into your life.
Eat fear for breakfast, like some Greek yogurt or an Egg McMuffin.
Like a grape.
Originally published at medium.com